Smart Living: Want to really improve someone’s life? Buy them a gift that helps them unplug - - PressFrom - US
  •   
  •   
  •   

Smart Living Want to really improve someone’s life? Buy them a gift that helps them unplug

20:05  03 december  2019
20:05  03 december  2019 Source:   marketwatch.com

There's a Reason Trader Joe’s Gift Cards Are Only Sold In Store

  There's a Reason Trader Joe’s Gift Cards Are Only Sold In Store Trader Joe’s gift cards may not be glamorous, but they make great, practical gifts. Learn the rules about where to buy Trader Joe’s gift cards and who sells them before you buy.It’s 2019, and gift card ideas are near ubiquitous. You can pick up a gift card almost anywhere, for almost anything—you can even get gift cards at Trader Joe’s. Grocery store gift cards may not be flashy, exactly, but they’re extremely practical, and could even end up being one of the best white elephant gifts or raffle prizes at your event. Trader Joe’s gift cards might even be a step above the rest, if you’re a fan of the stores, with all the Trader Joe’s gifts and exclusive items available at your fingertips.


  Want to really improve someone’s life? Buy them a gift that helps them unplug © Illustration by Maria Corte

Young and old people alike today are eager to rip the wrapping off of life, not boxes. In fact, as a new year and a new decade approaches, getting out of the box is exactly the point. People increasingly strive to be consumed by a world they design and desire, rather than consume whatever designer doodad the world tells them they need.

If this describes someone close to you, and you want to give them a unique gift, ’tis the season to go “om” for the holidays. Send them to a retreat center — a secluded escape from deadlines, family-and-work drama and the distraction of social media and electronics. Now go one step further and choose a facility where, in addition to traditional yoga, meditation, massage and spa offerings, guests can enroll in the school of life — through workshops focused on wellness and mindfulness, creativity, management skills, relationships, and other personal and professional goals.

14 Ingredients Grandma Always Had in Her Pantry

  14 Ingredients Grandma Always Had in Her Pantry Ever wonder the secret to Grandma's cooking? These vintage ingredients are staples in her pantry. The post 14 Ingredients Grandma Always Had in Her Pantry appeared first on Taste of Home.

“Spending time immersed in a pristine, natural environment is enough to relieve tension and bring a sense of nourishment,” says Travis Newbill of Shambala Mountain Center in Red Feather Lakes, Colo. “If you combine this with techniques that promote self-reflection, relaxation and heighten our capacity to tune in to our surroundings, the benefit is even more profound.”

Retreats can move us forward. Workshop topics cover the spectrum from art to Zen. There’s something for everyone: purists and pursuers; spiritual and secular; intuitive and intellectual.

“Spending time immersed in a pristine, natural environment is enough to relieve tension and bring a sense of nourishment.” — Travis Newbill of Shambala Mountain Center in Red Feather Lakes, Colo.

“It’s an opportunity to stretch into areas you may be ignoring in your life,” says Carla Goldstein, president of the Omega Institute for Holistic Studies, near Rhinebeck, N.Y. “People go back feeling refreshed and connected, and remembering that being human means that we are learning throughout our lifetime.”

A Modern Guide to Gift-Giving Etiquette

  A Modern Guide to Gift-Giving Etiquette The rules about re-gifting might surprise you.You should always bring a gift to someone’s home. The host may say, “Don’t bring anything” but they won’t refuse your lovely gesture once you arrive. A hostess gift can be a small, token item, such as a candle, festive cocktail napkins, or even a home-baked good.

These life-coaching and life-living classes typically run over a weekend or several days. Residential retreat centers can be magnificent, such as the Esalen Institute in Big Sur, Calif., with its hot springs and ocean-view massage sessions, or more minimalist. Some centers have all-inclusive pricing, while others charge a workshop fee plus room and board.

Enlightenment and edification isn’t cheap, so expect a decidedly non-minimalist bill: a two-night weekend workshop at Esalen in a basic private room with three meals a day is about $1,300, for example. A similar stay at Omega runs a few hundred dollars for a workshop plus about $750 for a standard private room with board; a weekend at Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health in Stockbridge, Mass., costs about the same. By comparison, a weekend workshop with a private room at The Art of Living Retreat Center in Boone, N.C., can be less than $1,000. Retreats have cropped up in every corner of the world, but U.S. residents, particularly those with time constraints, will likely find their place without having to leave the country.

What Is the Gift Tax? Relax, You Probably Don't Owe It

  What Is the Gift Tax? Relax, You Probably Don't Owe It Hey big spender: Know your tax requirements.The gift tax rates range from 18% to 40% but most people won't ever have to pay it. That's because the IRS encourages generosity with two types of exemptions, annual and lifetime. The exemptions for 2020 had not been released as of press time, but for 2018 and 2019, the annual exclusion is $15,000 and the lifetime exclusion is $11.4 million. So unless you're set to pass along extreme wealth to your successors, you probably don't have to worry about the gift tax.

Programs have their own look and feel. Usually they are led by professionals, often well-known in their fields, with an appropriately alternative, new-age slant. Upcoming workshops at Esalen, for example, include “Unfinished Business: Create Your Next Steps in Life From the Inside Out,” and “It’s Not Your Money — How to Live Fully From Divine Abundance.” Omega’s programs in 2020 feature a meditation weekend with revered Buddhist teacher Pema Chödrön, a writing workshop with cartoonist and author Lynda Barry, and relationship coaching from Harville Hendrix and Helen LaKelly Hunt, the married authors of the popular book “Getting the Love You Want: A Guide for Couples.”

“Different retreat centers offer different experiences, so we recommend choosing based on an individual’s needs,” says Cheryl Fraenzl, Esalen’s director of programs. “Perhaps the person is looking for a weekend to simply rest and restore. Other times a person is seeking a specific experience, whether it be reigniting a sense of creativity, expanding a somatic practice, or delving into relationship dynamics. Finding the right workshop fit is important.”

Texting Thumb Hurts, and It’s Your Valid Excuse to Finally Unplug

  Texting Thumb Hurts, and It’s Your Valid Excuse to Finally Unplug The number of blue light glasses and tech neck creams on the market have probably clued you in: technology can do some damage to our bodies . And sadly, your thumbs aren't immune to the issue, either. © Getty Images Close up of young woman having coffee and reading news on mobile phone in the early morning before work Yes, "texting thumb" is an actual injury. require(["medianetNativeAdOnArticle"], function (medianetNativeAdOnArticle) { medianetNativeAdOnArticle.getMedianetNativeAds(true); }); According to Arnold-Peter C. Weiss, M.D.

Websites to assist in a search include Retreat Guru, which filters retreats according to price, type, location, teachers and other criteria. Cameron Wenaus, Retreat Guru’s co-founder and CEO, says the site monitors and reviews thousands of retreat centers worldwide to ensure their legitimacy. “We want people to be able to feel they can trust,” he says, “and to be empowered to ask the retreat centers the right questions.”

What type of questions? Wenaus suggests contacting the workshop’s instructor beforehand to inquire about the class agenda and objectives, and about the teacher’s related life experiences. Plus, find out how best to prepare for the course, such as books and videos to study. “Be clear about your intention,” Wenaus says. “If you go in foggy, you get a foggy result.”

If all this fits your special someone, here’s the tricky part: getting that person on board if they’re not already so inclined. Many people pay no mind to mindfulness. They have no need to disconnect in order to connect with themselves and others. People are creatures of habit; an unsolicited invitation to make life changes, especially in the self-improvement department, could be misinterpreted as critical and condescending.

“If people aren’t ready for that kind of work, it could be threatening,” Wenaus says. One solution if a friend or loved one is resistant or new to new-age thinking is for you to be their retreat companion. This can help allay any fear and even strengthen the bond between you.

The pleasant surprise for many retreat participants is discovering a community of like-minded, open-minded people. This sense of being part of something bigger than yourself is reinforced by a retreat’s natural setting. Esalen is perched above the rugged Northern California coast; Kripalu is nestled in the picturesque Berkshire Mountains; The Art of Living is deep in the lush Blue Ridge Mountains; Shambala is high in the Rockies.

Electronics generally are discouraged, so binge-watch “Stranger Things” at home. Wi-Fi and mobile-phone service may be available, but reception can be spotty and coverage limited at best. Meals are health-conscious, and tea and water, not alcohol, will fill your cup.

“We are modeling what it means to live in a healthy community,” says Goldstein, Omega’s president. “Bring a flashlight, flat shoes, a sweater, bug spray, and openness.”

Gift-Wrapping Hacks to Make Your Holidays So Much Easier .
There are two types of people in this world. So, for the rest of us, we’ve got some excellent gift-wrapping hacks for you, all in video form, so you have very little chance of messing it up, even if you’re doing it at 2 a.m. the night before the gift exchange.

—   Share news in the SOC. Networks

Topical videos:

usr: 1
This is interesting!